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The cryptic crossword shown on this page is one of the hardest printable word puzzles to solve.
In a cryptic crossword, each clue is its own word puzzle, and you have to read it the right way. What the clue appears to say when read normally usually has nothing to do with the answer, and is there as a distraction.
The challenge is to find the way of reading the clue that leads to the solution.
A cryptic clue has two parts: One part of the clue is the exact definition. The other part gives you the answer in terms of wordplay.
Wordplay can include puns, synonyms, spelling things backwards, mixing up letters, taking things literally, etc. Nobody tells you which part of a clue is which.
Here is an example, taken from the puzzle shown below:
19 Down: "Egg recipe with Bombay and Tangueray goes to our heads." is the clue for NOGGINS.
This breaks down as follows.
"Our heads" is the definition
"egg recipe" gives us NOG, and goes "with"
"Bombay and Tangueray," which are GINS.
"goes to" can be thought of as "becomes," so NOG and GINS becomes NOGGINS (our heads).
Although difficult at first, this type of puzzle is highly addictive once you get the hang of it. So just right click on the puzzle and clues, select PRINT from the drop-down menu, and give it a try! Scroll down for the solution.
For more printable word puzzles and other free printable items, visit any of the links shown on this page.
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT CROSSWORD PUZZLES:
The first crossword puzzle was invented by Arthur Wynne, and appeared in the Christmas edition of the "New York World" in 1913.
When the "New York World" tried to discontinue its weekly crossword puzzle, the resulting public outrage forced the magazine to reinstate the crossword puzzle feature just one week later.
The first crossword puzzle ever created was diamond-shaped.
Crossword puzzles used to be called Word-cross puzzles.
The first book dedicated entirely to crossword puzzles was published in 1924, authored by Dick Simon and Lincoln Schuster.
Simon and Schuster still publishes Crossword Puzzle Books. The original series ended in 2007 after 258 volumes.
The creating of crossword puzzles is called cruciverbalism.
Crossword puzzles are NOT case-sensitive.
However, most crossword solvers find capital letters easiest to use in a typical puzzle grid. The main reason for capital letters is that they eliminate the potential confusion between the letter i and the letter l.
Many American crossword puzzles contain a "theme," consisting of a number of entries that share some common element.
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